The 3rd Canada International Choral Festival (CICF 2019) and the 1st Sino-Canada International Choral Festival took place on July 26-28, 2019.
The 2019 lineup featured a diverse range of choirs and vocal groups, spanning genres like music of Canada, Mexico, Africa, China and more. The returning artists included crowd favorites, such as Cadence, the Glisten Quartet, and the Mexican Mariachi Band with tenor Romulo Delgado. Together, they demonstrated their vocal and choral skills on the last evening Exchange Concert at the Markham P.C.C Auditorium, 22 Esna Park Drive, Markham, ON L3R 1E1. Also, the first-time participant, the Neema Children’s Choir, performed for this concert besides their showcase in the opening and the competition.
Back for a second year were the Canadian-Chinese choirs from Montreal, Ottawa, Waterloo, and Toronto, whose fusion of Chinese culture and Canadian music kept the audience exhilarated all day long at last year’s fest. They are the Breeze of Harmony Choir, the Montreal Hua Xia Philharmonic Choir, the Yangtze River Performing Arts, the Kaleidoscope Chinese Performing Arts, the Tsinghua Alumni Performing Arts Group, the Red Maple Sunset Glow Cultural Association, and the Waterloo Chinese Philharmonic Choir.
Following the success of this year's Chinese New Year concert by the China Broadcasting Chinese Orchestra in Canada in collaboration with distinguished Canadian musicians, CCCDA again collaborated with the China Broadcasting Chinese Orchestra and held several concerts, this time, in the United States of America's beautiful west coast cities San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Seattle.
Under the baton of celebrated conductor Pang Ka Pang and with world renowed musicians, the China National Broadcasting Orchestra has created new forms of classic Chinese music with a more modern interpretation. They have used the universal language of music to bridge the gap between all the fascinating cultures of the world, through exciting and informative music. Audiences immersed themselves in new soundscapes and broaden their musical horizons with an incomparable taste of Chinese music.
The Chinese Original Ballet “Mulan” is produced by Liaoning Ballet Group (Liaoning Ballet, or Liaoba)
The ballet drama Hua Mulan was staged in Canadian cities Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal in September 2019.
Produced by the Liaoning Ballet of China, it attempts to interpret the classic Chinese story of Hua Mulan through dance and music for contemporary audiences.
Mulan’s name originally appeared in the The Ballad of Mulan, an ancient Chinese poem composed based on the life story of Hua Mulan dating back to over 1000 years ago. Mulan, the valiant daughter, volunteered to join the army on behalf of her ailing father to defend her country. Despite her well-known military exploits, Hua Mulan excused herself from an official title and accolades, and returned to her hometown to live an ordinary life after the war.
In August 2019, CCCDA invited the theatre play "One Heart" to be performed in Vancouver and Toronto, Canada. The China Performing Arts Group organized the tour of the theatre drama. Produced by Beijing Longmashe Culture Communication Co., Ltd., the play was written by the renowned playwrite Zou Jingzhi, and performed by three famous actors Zhang Guoli, Wang Gang and Zhang Tielin.
"One Heart" tells a moving story of three strangers who run business in the historic Dongan trading market, and at the most trying time become friends with a tie as close as brothers during China's turbulent times at the end of the Qing Dynasty and the early Republic of China. But the three brothers, with contrasting personalities, are also very different in their way of life, about women, generosity, ambition, loyalty, business calculation, benevolence and righteousness.
To create this theatre drama, Mr. Zou Jingzhi devoted over ten years of his time, many versions of the script to enrich its unique Beijing colour, and the historical features. The play was specially tailored to fit the three main characters, performed by the three actors, the so-called "iron triangle".
Following the great success of the first Canada tour in 2009, Hang Gai Rock Band toured Canada again in September 2019. The band is a unique fusion of world music and rock cross-border groups. Their music originates from the vast Inner Mongolia Prairie but grows in the modern cosmopolitan Beijing. As a Chinese new age band with passion for nature, freedom and life, they pursuit an exuberant sense with dynamic energy, merging the modern musical creation and performance with classic Mongolian folk tune, history and traditional culture.
The uniqueness of their performances, free and wild but with sincerity and restrained strength, has won praises over the world.
In September, they performed in Vancouver, Toronto, and Ottawa.
The one-man show Life between Heaven and Earth is an adaptation of the novella The True Story of Ah Q by the renowned Chinese writer Lu Xun, performed by Su Xiaogang.
It is a cold rainy night with a bleak autumn wind. Ah Quei is beheaded for being a member of the Chinese Revolutionary Party, and his soul starts wandering through Weizhuang, the town where he lived before his death.
Feeling embittered, the spirit of the dead man looks back on his short life and tries to understand the cause of his miserable fate. He consults wise men, the noble lords in Weizhuang and his enemy, but they are unable to help. He is confused by his death and feels hatred towards the cold world.
The confused and angry spirit asks himself the same question, but doesn’t find an answer. He sighs helplessly, suspended in his life between Heaven and Earth. His ruminations on human nature turn into dreary, sorrowful rain.
The extraordinary China Disabled People’s Performing Art Troupe was
back following Canadian’s royal welcome in 2012.
The Troupe featured a cast of some 52 professional artists - acrobats, musicians, singers and dancers. They are in their 20’s and are all handicapped. Some cannot hear, some cannot see, some have mobility issues. At each performance, the public gives the artists a standing ovation moved by their breathtaking performance as much as by the emotion that transcends all barriers of languages and cultures. The public also discovers new art forms such as language poems, dance by visually impaired artists and dance with sign language.
This festival was born out of the recognition that there is a significant value in promoting the choral arts, as it inspires various choral groups and communities with different cultural backgrounds and performing styles to work together, exchange ideas and create new experiences; it thus contributes to multicultural prosperity in Canada. The Festival was held successfully in the National Capital of Ottawa, Canada on September 21-23, 2018.
The Canada International Choral Festival aims to build an international extensive art exchange and display platform in Canada. Through a series of choral festivals, concerts, master classes and the integration of choral art, our hope is that the Festival will help enhance the understanding of chorus art and encourage different Interactions and cooperation between countries, regions and groups. The Festival showcases a variety of talents, shares and disseminates musical, artistic and cultural traditions, and promotes Canadian multiculturalism.
The Festival Organizers consist of internationally well-known choral field conductors, educators, reviewers and other experts.
In the evening of July 11, 2018, at the Parliament Hill, Ottawa, the Sichuan folk artists gave Ottawa audience a fabulous performance.
The performance, presented by the Sichuan Folk Arts Research Institute, showcased many “National Treasures” from Sichuan Province, China, including those performed on ancient musical instruments, Sichuan opera segments, as well as demonstrations of paper-cutting, sugar-making, sugar painting.
The CCCDA also invited the local Ottawa C5 Children's Choir to sing the Canadian and Chinese national anthems at the opening.
At the end of the performance, the Minister Councilor of Culture at the Chinese Embassy Mr. Zhao Haisheng, the president of the Sichuan Folk Arts Research Institute Shen Jun, and the President of CCCDA Rudy Gao gave interviews to the People’s Daily news media.
The next day, the Sichuan performers traveled to Toronto and performed at the Richmond Hill Centre of Performing Arts on July 13th (Friday).
Specially designed for the North American audience, the concert featured music by the greatest film music legends, such as Oscar-winning composers John Williams, Ennio Morricone, James Horner, and Hans Zimmer. Always evolving to include special Chinese music genre, the program also featured top Chinese classic hits as Wang Liping's Shao Ling Temple, Lei Zhang Bang's Visitors on the Icy Mountain, and the music score from the Dream of Red Chamber. The China Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra delivered the quintessential holiday concert, captivating the audience with their unique selection of Chinese traditional and western classic favorites.
Founded in 1949, as the earliest China national symphony orchestra, the China Broadcasting Film Symphony Orchestra (CBFSO) has performed and recorded music of nearly 2,000 films, TV dramas and documentaries. Since its first tour abroad in 1992, the orchestra has performed in more than 40 countries on five continents, worked closely with renowned conductors, composers, dancers and performers. Whether at home or on tour, their concerts are always in high demand and frequently sold out. In recent years the Orchestra created innovatively a number of audience favorite big screen audio-visual film concerts, light concerts and other forms of concerts.
In September 2018, it is with great pleasure that the CCCDA brought a highly popular theatre drama "Stage" to the Canadian audience. This theatre comedy piece was created by the distinguished screenwriter Yu Yue, directed by the celebrated comedy show director Chen Peisi, and performed by renowned artists such as Chen Peisi and Yang Lixin. The drama was produced in early 2015, and since then has been enjoyed by millions of the audience.
The plot: In early Republic of China, the warlords melee. When Marshal Hong just entered Peking, the famous Peking opera troup "Five celebrations" is getting ready for a three-day performance featuring their most popular performer Jin Tianxiao. At the backstage, the troupe owner Mr. Hou and the theater manager Mr. Wu are immersed in the joy of their ticket box success. But with many characters including Marshal Hong, gangsters, street peddlers, a run-away concubine entangled together at the same time, things are getting messy and dangerous...
"Stage" tells the story of the day that happens at the backstage of the troupe, turning the stage 180 degrees, and breaking the conventional stage space concept. The usually mysterious backstage is revealed to the audience on the stage, while the usual stage performance is turned into "behind the scenes".
Renowned for the alluring fusion of Chinese tradition with a fiercely modern sensibility, Ballet Wild Grass is adapted from the poetry collection Wild Grass written by Chinese literary giant Lu Xun in 1927.
Comprising three movements, “Dead Fire,” “Farewell of the Shadow,” and “Dance of Extremity”, Wild Grass unfolds as an evocative abstraction of Lu’s volatile elemental landscapes, accompanied by solo piano, strings, and experimental electronica.
White paper leaves scatter underfoot as dancers alternate between balletic grace and tension, conjuring the fragility and vitality of the human spirit.
It has been toured more than 100 performances in BAM theatre of New York, Kennedy Center of Washington, Harris Theatre of Chicago, and many other main city theatres in USA, Europe and Australia.
In 2017, Canada celebrated its 150th anniversary, and 150th anniversary of Ottawa city as well.
Under the auspice of these exciting events, it is with great pleasure that the CCCDA presented the Zhejiang Youth Symphony Orchestra (ZYSO) to the Canadian audience.
On July 28, in collaboration with the Canadian Sinfonietta Youth Orchestra, the ZYSO presented their first concert at the Toronto P.C. Ho Theatre. Over sixty young musicians from two countries jointly delivered interpretations of the Yao Dance, Overture de Carmen, Frühlingsstimmen Walzer,op.410, Jasmin and many other different styles of international music pieces. The audience had a wonderful evening with enjoyable experience on a wide range of musical performances.
Outdoor symphony concert by Zhejiang Youth Symphony Orchestra was presented on the evening of August 2 at the landmark of Canada-Parliament Hill, just before the light show which has more than 30 years history. As an event of Canada150 and Ottawa150, specially invited VIP guests, including Chinese Ambassador of Canada, MPs, MPPs and City councilors, representatives from the city and partner institutes attended the concert. The concert was open to public.
Labeled by many as an infamous tale of sexual desires, the fascinating classic Chinese novel, Jin Ping Mei, made another mark in history with its world premiere Ballet Golden Lotus debut in Hong Kong. Now it is touring Canada.
With beautiful costumes and sets, rich traditional and contemporary music, and tight choreography, Ballet Golden Lotus tells the story of a 1500s Chinese “Madame Bovary” – Beauty Golden Lotus whose unfortunate love, with the tiger slayer Wu Sung, the high dignitary Xi Men Qin, and her humble peddler husband Wu Da, led her to a bloody desperate ending. Told in four acts, "Prelude," "Wu Sung," "Xi Men," and “Lian,” the dance drama's structure reflects the characters’ struggles in expressive passages of dance and music, through a wonderful combination of timelessness and a great deal of mystery, intrigue and the excitement of it being set in a time we didn't live in.
Adapting the most famous Chinese ancient erotica and presenting it to people from a prudish and sexually repressive culture, as the production was about to tour China after its great success in Hong Kong, it became the focus of fiery debate in the media - resulting in its prohibition throughout the country because of its controversial content. Tamed some scenes in order to pass muster, Golden Lotus was finally being staged on the mainland China, but three years after its debut in Hong Kong.
Golden Lotus, getting to the heart of its title character in an efficient 90 minutes, is a great and novel experience for theatre lover.
The Canada-China Cultural Development Association had the honour of launching the first Ottawa International Choral Festival (OICF), on Saturday, January 28, 2017. This new OICF festival showcased all things choral, including a massed choir on Parliament Hill and an inaugural concert! There was participation from choirs from Ottawa, including the Ottawa Bach Choir, the Christ Church Cathedral Choir of Men and Boys, the Rideau Chorale, the Cantata Singers of Ottawa and the Ewashko Singers, as well as those with a Chinese choral emphasis from Canada, the United States, and China.
Because of the invaluable significance of promoting choral arts with respect to contributing to multicultural prosperity in Canada, and realizing the unlimited potential of communication, cooperation and exchange amongst various choral groups and communities with different heritage backgrounds and performing styles, this festival was born.
To celebrate the fantastic occasion of Lunar New Year, on January 6, 2017, the CCCDA presented a spectacular Chinese variety show “Embrace China”. This show was brought to Toronto by the China Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese, and showcased songs performed by the renowned Chinese folk singers Dong Yuanhua, Chen Junhua, and Zhang Yuanming, acrobatic performances by the famous China Acrobatic Performing Troupe, instrumental music, and many many more. This show brought to Toronto Chinese community the warm greetings from the motherland, with best wishes for good health and prosperity in the new year.
This show was organized by the China Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese, and managed by the CCCDA, 美加华语FM102.7, Canada China Culture Arts Association, supported by the 加拿大专卖品集团承办，and assisted by the Canada Multi-culture Association and Canada China Education Association.
Founded in 1949, as the earliest China national symphony orchestra, the China Broadcasting Film Symphony Orchestra (CBFSO) has performed and recorded music of nearly 2,000 films, TV dramas and documentaries. Since its first tour abroad in 1992, the orchestra has performed in more than 40 countries on five continents, worked closely with renowned conductors, composers, dancers and performers.
Centrepointe Theatres was packed house on Wednesday night, which for China Broadcasting Film Symphony Orchestra felt like testimony of their larger cultural mission and one-year journey to put it all together.
Whether at home or on tour, their concerts are always in high demand and frequently sold out. In recent years the Orchestra created innovatively a number of audience favorite big screen audio-visual film concerts, light concerts and other forms of concerts.
To celebrate the 2015-2016 People-to-People Culture Exchange between Canada and China, on October 6, 2016, the CCCDA hosted a “Beauty of Chinese Calligraphy - Calligrapher Mr. Cui Renhui Exhibition” in Ottawa Shaw Centre. Mr. Cui is an adjunct professor at the South China University. Since his childhood, he has studied Chinese calligraphy, painting, seal cutting, and photography, and is a highly accomplished artist. He will present several styles of calligraphy tracing back to the very long history of Chinese calligraphic evolution.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent a congratulatory letter to the calligraphy exhibition, praising the exhibition for providing the opportunity for Chinese Canadians to trace the roots, and enrich the Canada’s multiculturalism. Mr. Trudeau expressed thanks to calligrapher Cui Renhui for sharing his artistic achievements and to the organizers of the event, the China-Canada Cultural Development Association, for organizing the exhibition. The Chargé d'affaires ad interim of Chinese Embassy Mr. Wang Wentian also sent a congratulatory letter to the exhibition. The Minister Counselor of Culture at the Chinese Embassy Mr. Zhao Haisheng, and several other dignitaries also participated in the event and viewed the exhibition. The exhibition also held workshops for young children.
As part of the 2015-2016 People-to-People Culture Exchange between Canada and China, a delegation of artists from the China National Academy of Painting visited Canadian cities including Toronto, Niagara Falls, Kingston, Ottawa, and Montreal. They visited museums, art galleries, parks, and countryside, and painted wherever they went, drawing inspiration from Canadian landscape. The CCCDA hosted their tour.
The renowned Beijing People’s Arts Theatre performed the famous contemporary Chinese theatre play “Tea House” in Toronto and Vancouver. “Tea House” is the masterpiece creation by the renowned late Chinese playwright and novelist Lao She. “Tea House” is one of the most performed Chinese plays around the world, a signature production of the Beijing People’s Art Theatre. The play, which was staged over half a century ago, is a social and cultural commentary on the problems and changes in China during the early twentieth century. Since 1956, “Tea house” has performed over 600 times, including those that were successfully staged in France, Switzerland, Hamburg and many other countries.
Set in an old tea house in downtown Beijing, the play is typical of Lao She's art style that seeks to provide a panoramic view of Chinese history and culture in their transformation from tradition to modernity. “Tea house” spans fifty years in modern Chinese history from the collapse of the Qing dynasty and the Republican Revolution to the birth of the People's Republic. The play brings together over sixty characters, representing all walks of life. It is noted for its vivid portrayal of characters and lively use of Beijing dialect, but its main thrust lies in Lao She's vision of history, which is prophetic of later political movements and its disastrous effects on the ordinary Chinese people. The tea house in the ancient capital of Beijing was a witness and a microcosm of the times.
The artists also participated in seminars on Chinese culture, theatre and literary arts at the University of Toronto and the University of British Columbia.
The Chinese classic dance drama Opera Warriors premiered in Canada on January 5, 2016, at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver. The show features a mix of modern dance, acrobatics, and martial arts. Theatre experts say the performance has both modern and traditional elements. This wonderful event was part of the 2015-2016 People-to-People and Culture Exchange program between the two countries. CCCDA coordinated this event.
On January 23, 2016, CCCDA organized a Flash Mop to celebrate Chinese New Year. As the symbol of peace, order and good governance, the Parliament Hill was the excellent place to celebrate the Canadian values and cultural diversity. A 60-member marching band, a Ottawa choir group, and folk and dragon dancesrs performed many happy songs and dances. Many community representatives, including the Federal Minister of Environment and Climate Catherine McKenna, and the Counsellor of Culture from the Chinese Embassy, participated in this event.
To celebrate the Mid Autumn Festival (Chinese Thanksgiving), CCCDA presented Guo Degang Comedy Show to Toronto audience on September 13, 2016. This comedy troupe has become one of the most popular comedy groups in China in recent years, and has attracted audience young and old. They have travelled to many countries to entertain oversea Chinese communities around the world. This event is sponsored by OTT Group. The 4-hour show in Toronto was a huge success where the Massy Hall was fully packed. After the show, a huge crowd of fans asked for autography.
On September 30， 2016， the China's most famous Shanghai Little Friends Arts Troupe traveled to Toronto and Montreal, Canada， and performed songs and dances for charitable causes. It was great success and attracted audience to donate for children's cherity causes. They also visited a seniors ' nursing home and entertained for seniors. The Little Friends Troupe was founded by Madam Song Qingling, the widow of Mr. Sun Yat Sen.
The Canada-China Cultural Development Association commits to bringing the best performing arts to Canadian audience. During the 2016 China’s National Day season in October, CCCDA will collaborate with the CCCTV to present the Peking Opera version of Shakespeare’s Hamlet to the Canadian audience. This show will be performed by the famous Shanghai Peking Opera House who has travelled around the world to present various classic and modern Peking operas. During their touring in Canada, the Shanghai Peking Opera House will use the traditional Peking Opera language to interpret Hamlet this legendary Western story.
CCCDA and Toronto CCCTV present Cultures of China Variety Show on February 27, 2016, at Toronton Sony Centre, to celebrate the Year of Monkey.
As a component of the 2015-2016 People-to-People and Culture Exchange program between the Canada and China, on February 14 and 16, 2016, the Chinese New Year and St. Valentine's Day, CCCDA presented Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra to major Canadian cities, including Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal.
MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE is one of the largest winter festivals in the world, an annual celebration registering 1 300,000 festival site visits from fans experiencing the joy of Montreal wintertime through a unique program combining performing arts, gastronomy, free outdoor family activities, and a full night of exquisitely original discoveries!
As part of the 2015-2016 People-to-People Culture Exchange between Canada and China, the Chinese city Shenzhen is featured during this festival. The featured international city at MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE this year, Shenzhen ranks among the wealthiest and most populous cities in China, with some 11 million inhabitants. Located in Southern China’s Guangdong Province, the municipality was still largely rural in the 1970s, but has experienced spectacular economic and demographic growth to now figure among the country’s most flourishing urban areas. Today, Shenzhen is a leading city in the arts, culture, tourism, innovation, and music, with its globally renowned symphony orchestra, and cosmopolitan gastronomy at the crossroads of different culinary influences.
Shenzhen food not only inherited the tradition of Cantonese Cuisine, one of China’s four major cuisines but also absorbed the essence of almost all the local cuisines in China, as well as the essence of Japanese, South Korean, Southeast Asian, French and Italian food. Furthermore, it develops into various types of food which can better fit modern urban people’s eating habits, and is more nutritious, delicious and of fine artistic design. At MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, famous chefs from Futian Shangri-La Hotel and Grand Mercure Oriental Ginza Hotel will present the essence of Shenzhen food.
And like Montreal, Shenzhen, a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network since 2008, has also been recognized as a UNESCO City of Design. That’s why a collaboration between MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE and Shenzhen was absolutely natural, and the Montreal event will unveil plenty of surprises from China throughout its different programs: gastronomy, the arts, and on the free outdoor site!
A rare and delightful experience, audiences enjoyed very exotic evenings featuring the distinguished Pipa master Lin Jiaqing from Beijing China, and “Yadong Guan Trio – pipa guitar and cello”. The Pipa, a four-stringed traditional Chinese instrument is one of the oldest instruments still in use today.
The Hee-Ha Comedy Group, led by Gao Xiaopan, toured Canada in September 2015. This group of young comedians, all belonging to the millennium generation, has become a comedy sensation in China, and is highly sought after by generations young and old. They visited Vanouver, Toronto and Ottawa.
Acrobats from Chinese Hebei Acrobatic Troupe performed during the Acrobatic Session of the 2015-2016 China-Canada Cultural Exchanges Year in Toronto, Canada, May 2, 2015. It’s amazing!
To celebrate the 66th anniversary of People’s Republic of China and the 70th anniversary of the ending of the Second World War, Beijing Golden Sail Art Troupe tours Canada, and participates in a series of events. Golden Sail Art Troupe was founded in 1986 in Beijing, and consists of middle school students who are talented in performing arts and music. This event is also a component of the 2015-2016 People-to-People Culture Exchange between Canada and China.
The National Chinese Acrobats toured in Canada in April for 15 performances. The 20 Chinese performers mesmerize and mystify with their stunning displays of the best in Chinese martial arts, illusion, acrobatics, music, dance and drama in a thrilling display of artistry and daredevil acts. Founded in 1959 in the province of Hunan, the troupe has produced a large number of nationally and internationally recognized and award-winning programs.
Chinese New Year Carnival China 2015 (CNY Carnival China 2015) is one of China’s most celebrated cultural shows. It is a production by China Broadcasting Performing Arts Troupe from Beijing and hosted by Chinese Cultural Development Association and the North American Chinese Student association which toured around Canada from February 25th to March14th. This Chinese New Year extravaganza was a theatrical hybrid, presenting cultural treasures of China from a new unique perspective. Made up of 60 top-level artists and entertainers, the China Broadcasting Performing Arts Troupe dazzled audiences with their dynamic and multi-ethnic productions.